Simple Tips for a Better Night’s Sleep - PIH Health

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Published on October 12, 2015

Simple Tips for a Better Night’s Sleep

Woman sleeping - get a better night's sleep

Woman sleeping - get a better night's sleepTossing and turning? Feeling sluggish or grouchy in the mornings? Many factors can interfere with a good night’s rest–-work stress, relationship issues and family responsibilities tend to keep many of us awake. Although you may not be able to control all of these, incorporating some of these helpful habits can encourage better sleep may make all the difference:

  1. Maintain a set sleep schedule. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends. Being consistent reinforces your body’s sleep-wake cycle.
  2. Pay attention to what you eat and drink. Limit the amount of nicotine, caffeine and alcohol you consume throughout the day. These stimulants take hours to wear off and can ruin a good night’s sleep. Alcohol may make you feel sleepy but often times it can disrupt sleep later in the night. You may also want to limit how much you drink before bed in order to reduce the trips to the restroom during the night.
  3. Create a bedtime ritual. Do the same types of activities each night to tell your body it’s time to wind down. Read a book, listen to soft music or take a warm bath or shower. Be wary of watching television or other electronic devices such as checking email on your cell phone.
  4. Get comfortable. Create a relaxing atmosphere to sleep in. You may consider using room-darkening shades, earplugs, a fan or other devices that may suit your needs. Your mattress and the right pillow can also contribute to better sleep. If you have children sleeping in your bed, it may be time to transition them into their own bed.
  5. Limit naps during the day. If you choose to nap during the day, limit yourself to about 10 to 30 minutes and make it during the mid-afternoon. If you work nights, consider keeping your window coverings closed so that sunlight doesn’t interrupt your daytime sleep.
  6. 6. Exercise. Regular physical activity can not only help you fall asleep faster, you may even enjoy a deeper sleep.
  7. Manage stress. When you have a lot on your mind or have too much to do, your sleep is likely to suffer. Allow yourself to take a break when needed. Share a good laugh with a friend or mate.

“With everyday demands and a fast paced lifestyle, nearly everyone experiences sleepless nights. But if you are consistently having trouble sleeping, consult your doctor,” says Bharat Patel MD, PIH Health Physicians Internal Medicine.

The information in Healthy Living Online is for educational purposes only.  It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice.  The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation, or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.

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